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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 32306
Experience:  Began practicing law in 1992
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My father is 71 and he is listed on Maegan' list he also

Customer Question

My father is 71 and he is listed on Maegan' list he also did 12 years in jail for his crime so anyway in 2011 my dad was released from prison 3months after he suffered a severe stroke he can't move or talk and has been this way since May of 2011 and he also lives in a nursing home....yesterday evening a popular news reporter broke a story about sex offenders who live in nursing homes this reporter showed my father's face and the nursing home that he is located in is there anything that I can do about this legally because I feel that he has now put my father in danger, danger that he get mistreated and not cared for properly now that this news has been brought to light I also feel that if someone wanted to walk into that nursing home to take justice into the own hands now my father is subject to that and he can't even defend himself
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts.

Before we get any further into your situation, I need to make sure that you understand how the website and rating system works.

Many times in situations like yours the law is not in favor of the aggrieved. When that happens we have to give the person asking the question bad news. It's true, but sometimes it's not in their favor.

On this website the customer rates us experts at the end of the question and answer and every now and then a customer is unhappy about the law and gives a negative rating. Unfortunately, that negative rating is taken by the website to be a reflection on me, indicating that I wasn't polite, wasn't prompt, or provided a wrong answer.

I'm more than happy to discuss this with you, but I just wanted to make sure that you understood how the system works and that you will rate me on my professionalism and not on whether the law is in your favor or not, since I have no control over that.

With that understanding, do you want me to discuss this in more detail with you?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I understand and I thank you
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

All right.

I do need you to explain to me what exactly you want to do. That will enable me to assess your chances. It may take just a little back and forth to get the specifics but it shouldn't take too long.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I'm not really sure what my options are to be honest I'm just very up set because they put my father in a situation where his life may be in danger and when we tried to speak with this reporter he did not care what so ever he didn't even take the time to do true research because then he would have know that my dad is pretty much in a vegetable state and is no harm to anyone
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
That is one of my questions do I have any options is there anything I can do
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

I am going to assume what you are asking is if you can sue the news station or the reporter. If that's not it or if you have additional questions just let me know.

Unfortunately, so long as the reporter and the news station didn't outright lie then they are protected from any lawsuit by a variety of laws so if you sued them then the lawsuit would, at some point, be dismissed and it is even possible you could be held liable for attorney's fees for the other side.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
What about hipa is he not protected by being treated by the nursing home
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

A reporter and the news sources aren't a "covered entity" under HIPAA and therefore the law doesn't apply to them. If the nursing home released the fact that your Dad was there then they would violate it since all medical providers are "covered entities".

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Ok so there's nothing that can be don't we can't press charges nothing
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
They are free of any repercussions
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

So long as they didn't lie, yes. Your father's name and the charge/conviction, unless the crime was pardoned or expunged, would be public record and so there is nothing illegal about them providing that. As I mentioned, HIPAA only applies to "covered entities" so there is nothing in that law which would help. If they didn't tell the truth then there is a slander or libel case possible but other than that there really are no repercussions for them reporting as you have described, unfortunately.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Even by them suggesting that he my hurt someone in the nursing home
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

It depends on exactly what they said and the context of the entire article/report. It is almost impossible to hold a newspaper or reporter responsible unless it is an outright lie as to a fact. It an't be an opinion or conjecture about what could happen in the future.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I don't understand
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

In other words, if they say that a person convicted of child abuse could be a danger to other people in the future who are in a helpless situation then it is just conjecture. If they say, instead, we have seen ***** ***** walking the hallways of the nursing home and going into other rooms unsupervised and that represents a danger then that would be a lie about a fact because your father couldn't have been walking the hallways and going into rooms since he isn't physically able to do so.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Ok I get it well thank you
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 9 months ago.

You're very welcome. I wish I had better news for you but unfortunately the news organizations are very good at staying within the boundaries of what they're able to get away with.

Best wishes to you and please don't forget to leave a Positive Rating so I receive credit for my work.